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Training Log Archive: Sandy

In the 7 days ending Jun 2:

activity # timemileskm+ftload
  hiking4 11:22:34 12.32(55:24) 19.83(34:25) 2071188.2
  walking1 28:45 0.68(42:27) 1.09(26:23) 666.4
  Total5 11:51:19 13.0(54:44) 20.92(34:00) 2137194.6

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Saturday Jun 1 #

11 AM

walking 28:45 intensity: (22:19 @1) + (6:26 @2) 0.68 mi (42:27 / mi) +66ft 38:52 / mi
ahr:93 max:108

We spent the day sight-seeing around Cusco. Saw lots of interesting things including the large market, some more Incan ruins and some cathedrals. The whole history of the Spanish conquest is fascinating - they built churches on top of all the Incan temples to disappear them and try to convert everyone to Catholicism. Then some earthquakes in 1950(?) exposed some of the Incan walls that had been covered up and some of that architecture has been restored.

I kept hearing about how the Incan walls were built like Lego bricks. I just thought they were commenting on how well they were meshed together with no spacing between the bricks. But actually they meant it much more literally - the Incas made the bricks with protruding bumps to fit into corresponding depressions in the next brick. Blew me away.

The main square in the old town. Cusco is in a bit of a valley but it has crept up all the surrounding hillsides as it has grown, tourism driving most of it.


Some weird fruits that we tasted at the market; most were great but I don't remember what any of them were called.

A close up of some Lego bricks.

Friday May 31 #


This was our last day in the Sacred Valley and the Explora lodge. Our transfer back to Cusco wasn't until the afternoon; Scott and I opted to relax while Brenna and Dennis did the bike ride they had planned for Wednesday morning.


Thursday May 30 #

9 AM

hiking 5:06:45 intensity: (1:42:03 @1) + (2:14:03 @2) + (1:10:25 @3) + (14 @4) 4.95 mi (1:01:58 / mi) +950ft 52:26 / mi
ahr:103 max:133

I kept waffling about what I wanted to do for this day. I knew I wanted to hike in the Puna region (the high hills to the north of the lodge) but I kept worrying about trying to do too much and holding back the kids if I went on a hike with them. I had some guides trying to talk me into doing easier stuff and at first I settled for a shortish hike. But it was mostly downhill and towards the rainforest and I kept thinking that downhill in the rain was the worst combination for me. I decided to do the same hike that the kids were going to do knowing that there were two places where I could either a) be picked up by the van or b) take a short cut that took the hike from 6 miles down to 5.

And then we totally lucked out again in that our guide was Maty and the other couple that originally signed up for the hike bailed in the morning so it was just us. Turned out that yes, I was a bit slower than the kids and had to take a few more breaks to catch my breath, but they were totally fine with it since it made the hike easy for them and gave them time to take lots of pictures. And we were overall faster than the average groups apparently.

I kept forgetting to stop/start my watch on all the hikes so I just let it run during lunch - the first big place where the pace goes to 0 is our lunch stop. The second is the shortcut - the rest of the group did a mile loop around a lake while I rested on a small hill where I could see them the whole time and I joined back up with them as they got back to close to where I was waiting. It worked out for everyone and I'm so glad I did this hike.

We saw lots of people working their small plots of land - mostly potatoes - and a whole bunch of alpacas including some very cute babies. Just a beautiful hike.

But it was at close to 14,000 ft the whole time!

My boys. So great to spend the week with them.



Some alpacas, but can't see any babies.


The hike was called "5 Lagunas" since it meandered around 5 lakes.

This is where I waited for them to do the extra mile around this lake. They are actually in the picture if you know where to look for them.

Wednesday May 29 #

2 PM

hiking 1:40:15 intensity: (40:34 @1) + (30:55 @2) + (28:46 @3) 3.06 mi (32:46 / mi) +256ft 30:21 / mi
ahr:102 max:128

Knowing that the day before was going to be long, Scott and I had opted for just an afternoon hike. You usually sign up for the hikes the night before but since we were going to be gone until late, we had to sign up Monday night.
Brenna and Dennis were going to do a bike ride in the morning and then join us for the hike. Unfortunately, Brenna succumbed to some sort of chest cold overnight and they spent the morning getting some medication. I'm sure it had something to do with the altitude. She managed her symptoms reasonably well for the rest of the trip but was pretty exhausted for a lot of it. But all 4 of us still did the hike and it was one of the highlights. It was a relatively short, gentle hike but our guide Maty was fantastic and the weather was great and the views phenomenal. We all really enjoyed this one.

Dennis and Brenna:

We were up on top of the plateau to the south of the lodge and had these views the whole time. It was recommended to do this hike in the afternoon and the lighting was pretty stunning as we finished. (My pictures do not do it justice.)

There's a whole river valley between the foreground and the hills in the background.

A glimpse of the valley.


Tuesday May 28 #

2 PM

hiking 2:28:30 intensity: (1:13:19 @1) + (54:31 @2) + (18:35 @3) + (2:05 @4) 1.9 mi (1:18:09 / mi) +389ft 1:05:27 / mi
ahr:101 max:137

This was a very long day to go visit Machu Picchu. There was a 1.5 hour van ride, followed by a 2 hour train ride followed by .5 hour bus ride to get there. We wondered around the ruins with a guide for about 2.5 hours and then had to reverse the process to get back to the lodge.

I'm glad I visited Machu Picchu, and it's pretty spectacular, but not really the highlight of the trip I expected it to be.

The fact that it is sitting on top of towering mountain with steep drops all around is pretty impressive.

Monday May 27 #

9 AM

hiking 2:07:04 intensity: (1:26:48 @1) + (27:44 @2) + (12:32 @3) 2.41 mi (52:43 / mi) +476ft 44:25 / mi
ahr:96 max:127

The kids decided on an all day excursion to see some Incan archeological sites. It was 10+ miles though so I decided on a half-day hike up a different side valley than Sunday that ended at a hummingbird sanctuary. The hike was very nice although there was another family on the hike and I think they were a bit annoyed with my slow pace.

The hike up the valley was through some fairly old forest. There was a stream nearby coming down from the tops of the mountains and everything was very mossy and damp.

We topped out in a very nice garden of sorts. It's a little hard to see but there is some sort of altar just over my left shoulder in the background. It was a lot prettier than the photo makes out, but this is the only picture I have of myself anywhere.

We ended at the hummingbird sanctuary. None of my hummingbird pictures came out but this "hummingbird flower" was a nice substitute.

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